The LeaFrancis Company was established in 1895. They marketed a three-cylinder, 15 horsepower vehicle, noted for its three-foot long pushrods. Next, they manufactured motorcycles in the teens, returning to automobile manufacturing in 1920. During their lifespan, the company produced over 10,000 vehicles.
After World War II came to a close, the Lea-Francis company began producing the Twelve and Fourteen. The Fourteen produced a series of four-door saloons that had styling similar to the pre-war cars. In the front was an upright vertical-bar grille and headlamps mounted separately. The doors were rear-hinged, 'suicide' style doors that had no vent panes.
In 1947, the company introduced the Mark II which was nearly identical to the Mark I except that it now had a single beltline for the bodyside. Also, a new fixed-head coupe with a body by Westland was added to the line-up.
Powering the Fourteen was a 108 cubic-inch four-cylinder engine that offered 65 horsepower. It was fitted with an SU horizontal carburetor and three main bearings.
The MK III was introduced for 1948 and was very similar in appearance to the MKII. A Deluxe version could be purchased which included a radio, heater and air conditioner.
In 1951, Lea-Francis introduced a restyled Fourteen four-door saloon, though appearance remained similar to the prior models. The four-cylinder engine powering the car displaced 107.8 cubic-inches and produced 65 horsepower.
Late in 1952, the Fourteen received full hydraulic brakes as standard equipment, replacing the former hydro-mechancial system.By Daniel Vaughan | Jun 2011